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Joe Straus Will Retire, But He’s Not Ruling Out a Run for Governor

In the future, Straus could run against Governor Greg Abbott, who indicated support for an ”oust Straus” movement.

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Texas Speaker of the House Joe Straus, R-San Antonio, calls the House of Representatives to order in Austin, Texas on Tuesday, July 18, 2017.
Photograph by Eric Gay/AP Photo

Texas House Speaker Joe Straus—who led the fight to derail the bathroom bill—announced Wednesday that he will not seek re-election to his San Antonio district, therefore eliminating another possible term as speaker. But he didn’t rule out a Republican primary challenge to Governor Greg Abbott.

“I’m not one to close doors. I have to tell you as I’ve traveled the state, speaking out on issues that I think are important to our economy, important to most people, not just Republicans but most Texans, who want to see our economy and opportunities grow and do things that attract jobs and not chase them away,” Straus said at a news conference announcing his decision. “I’ve had people on a daily basis suggest I run for another office.”

Straus repeatedly said during the news conference that he has no plans to be on an election ballot in 2018, but skirted journalists’ questions about a run for governor.

“I look forward to having the time to talk to the people who have been very supportive of me around the state, which I haven’t done yet, today, to see what they think I ought to do and what they are willing to do with me,” Straus said. “But whether I run for public office again or whether I can be a constructive voice and somebody with influence earned over the years, I can make an impact wherever it is.”

Straus oversaw a House that passed one of Abbott’s signature issues: Senate Bill 4, the sanctuary cities bill that allows police to ask people to prove their citizenship and creates a mechanism to remove any state law enforcement official who does not cooperate with federal immigration authorities in the deportation of undocumented immigrants.

But Straus and the governor have clashed over the bathroom bill, which aimed to keep transgender people out of government and school bathrooms that do not match the gender on their birth certificate. Texas businesses opposed the bathroom bill as discriminatory legislation that would make it difficult to recruit and retain employees in the state. Some believe the issue will keep Amazon from locating its second headquarters and 50,000 employees in Texas.

Still, Abbott called a special session on the issue, which Straus likened to “horse manure.” Abbott declared he was going to keep a list of legislators who opposed him, and a new political committee recently formed with the intention of electing House members who would vote against Straus receiving a sixth term as speaker.

Abbott was happy that most of his agenda passed in the special legislative session, but he blamed Straus for the failure of the bathroom bill. “We’ve got to either make sure we have a current Speaker who support those principles, or we’ve got to make sure we have the votes in the House to get those principles passed,” Abbott said.

Straus had announced in May that he would seek re-election both to his House seat and as speaker. He believed he had the support to win both elections, but expressed frustration with social and religious conservative groups who have opposed him every election cycle. “This whole process, after doing this for five times, and certain groups that you are aware of are doing the same thing again for the sixth time, as some point it gets so repetitive that what I needed to do is go home and take stock of how things are back home in the district, and they are very strong, stronger than ever, especially after the summer we’ve had,” Straus said at his news conference.

Straus said he feels certain that conservative Republicans can win House races even when faced with fringe opponents. “Rational Republicans will always survive their primary because they always have,” he said. “It’s a myth that you have to be crazy to win a Republican primary for the Texas House. People know House members. We come from local communities where people know us. Our constituents are our neighbors.”

That theme came up repeatedly as Straus continually declined to rule out a gubernatorial run:

“There is a hunger for a Republican voice out there that stresses issues that maybe haven’t gotten enough attention around the Capitol in the last few years.”

“I think of myself as the main voice for constructive issues that people really want to see us make progress on in Texas, from pre-kindergarten through 12 in public education, in higher education, we’ve done a lot of good things on water policy, funding the water plan for the first time after decades of neglect, transportation, we’ve done some good things.

“Those types of issues, bread-and-butter issues that are important to people, are what I want to keep talking about. Some of the other ideas that I didn’t think were the best, if I played a role in keeping them from happening, some people appreciate that.”

In a formal statement, Abbott gave a rather non-committal farewell to Straus. “Joe Straus has served with distinction for both the people in his district and for the Texas House of Representatives,” Abbott said. “I thank Speaker Straus for his service and for his commitment to the State of Texas. Cecilia and I wish Joe and Julie all the best.”

Social conservative groups, meanwhile, expressed joy at the news Straus was leaving office. “This is major victory for grassroots activists who have mobilized local Republican parties across the state to call for Straus to be removed,” wrote Tony McDonald of Empower Texans, the leading tea party group that has coordinated opposition to Straus. “But now is not the time to celebrate. It’s time to escalate.”

Straus’ surprise announcement, first made on his Facebook page, set off a race for speaker among House members. Budget committee chairman John Zerwas, a Republican from Richmond, almost immediately announced as a candidate. Republican Representative Phil King, from Weatherford, had announced last month as a challenger to Straus.

Within minutes of Straus making his retirement announcement, State Affair Chairman Byron Cook of Corsicana said he would not seek re-election. Cook has been one of the foremost House conservatives to oppose the bathroom bill.

House members elect the speaker from one of their own. The House Republican caucus has been pushing to have the next speaker elected by the caucus, but currently there are no rules to enforce party discipline. With more than a third of the House membership, Democrats cannot unilaterally elect a speaker, but can have a major influence on who wins the contest. Straus was repeatedly elected with a coalition of Democrats and Republicans.

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  • roadgeek

    I have to say the Joe Straus, a shrewd and canny politician, has misread the political climate in our country. Further, I’m going to say that the Democrats had a hand in his downfall. Here’s how. School tax reform, property tax reform, corporate tax reform and other related money issues are often vague and abstract to the average voter. To the voter, if his taxes go up, well, his mortgage will go up a bit. He’ll hardly notice it. No biggie.
    What chapped so many voters was the bathroom bill. You know and I know that chicks with dicks have been using the other bathroom for decades now. Nobody cared. It was just one of those things. No one said anything because no one knew. But then the whole transgender thing blew up, and the Dems seized on transgendered individuals as some sort of protected class, and decided that chicks with dicks need to not only be able to use the restroom of their choice, but that they should also be able to shower with real girls and use their locker rooms and so forth. And, given that raising a girl in our culture is hard enough, this was one more thing that parents were going to have to force down. One more indignity. One more assault on how they chose to raise their children. Further, this was an issue that fathers and mothers, but especially fathers, could wrap their mind around. A chick with a dick wants to shower with my daughter, who doesn’t have a dick. Nefarious things could happen. Perverted things. Shudder. This issue had legs. This issue was visceral. This issue was sexy in a way that property tax reform or school tax reform could never be.
    So the GOP, not missing an opportunity, wrote the infamous Bathroom Bill. They succeeded in energizing their base, and other voters as well. It drove campaign contributions. Drove turnout. And the bill was passed in the Senate.
    Enter Joe Straus. Joe, I am convinced, could care less about chicks with dicks. He just wants to a) keep the piece and b) please big business. The Bathroom Bill was conducive to neither. It had to be stopped. Straus arranged for it to stop, which is a simple matter for a Speaker who has a lackey like Byron Cook sitting on his lap.
    And now the base is enraged. Chicks with dicks are STILL bathing with our daughters, by God, and Joe Straus is to blame. And suddenly Straus finds himself in the middle of a forest fire. I almost feel sorry for him, but his fingerprints are all over the dead Bathroom Bill.
    To sum, I think Straus made the biggest misread of the political landscape in Texas in many years. I would be hard pressed to think of a more egregious example of forgetting conservative voters in this state as well as their elected representatives. Further, he overlooked the changing political climate on the national level, and seemed to assume that Texas is California.
    That Texas is not California has been brought home to Joe Straus, and the lesson was bruising.

    • Don Baker

      Agree with your article. Conservatives did not have a primary opponent to Straus, but we do to Byron Cook. By knocking off his RINO sycophants we could degrade his chance to be speaker again. Cook seen the handwriting on the wall and quit. We will continue to oppose Straus RINO henchmen in the March primary, people like JD Sheffield, Scott Cosper and several others. Texas will be far better with Straus and Cook gone. If Straus wants to launch a statewide race he will run into a lot of conservatives with long memories who have long wanted his head.

    • Kozmo

      Texas IS California. That’s the trouble. SoCal hipsters move to Austin and ruin it, and Orange County SoCal rightwingers move to the urban suburbs and ruin THEM.

      Have you listened to any of the accents in Texas cities lately?

      Anyway, the real world problem with the “bathroom bill” and all that it has produced — and this comes straight from the wife — is that the new trend toward unisex bathrooms only means that men are now befouling ALL bathrooms in restaurants and women have no place clean and neat to take care of their business, unlike the old days.

      • roadgeek

        Based on what my wife tells me, women are as good at befouling a bathroom as men are. My wife jokes about having to “hover”.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Boo hoo.

    • BCinBCS

      roadgeek wrote: “A chick with a dick wants to shower with my daughter, who doesn’t have a
      dick. Nefarious things could happen. Perverted things. Shudder.

      What nefarious, perverted things have happened? Cite one example of a transgender doing “nefarious” or “perverted” things. This is yet another case of conservatives making conspiracies out of whole cloth to keep their ignorant supporters in a constant state of rage

      • roadgeek

        The Internets really really needs a sarcasm font. Really.

        • SpiritofPearl

          And an IQ test for users. Really.

          • Don Baker

            Then we would no longer be entertained by your inane liberal rants.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Or your alt-right unintelligible bubba blabs . . .

    • Don Baker

      Correct. All of the primary voters I know would vote against any candidate who supported Straus. The incredible stupidity of politicians who think it is just fine for perverts to shower with their daughters is mind boggling. Democrats supporting that is not really suprising since the democrats support every sexual perversion known to man and are enemies of everything America stands for.

  • WUSRPH

    It says a lot about Trump’s America when the career of a man like Joe Straus is summed up in a lengthy rant about trandsgeneders.

    • SpiritofPearl

      The only reason I don’t block him is because he can write a complete sentence . . .

      • WUSRPH

        His entry is vulgar solely for the sake of vulgarity, It is what flagging is intended for.

        • SpiritofPearl

          TM ignores all flags.

      • BarksintheCountry

        You sure the debacle wasn’t started at the federal level by The Messiah.

    • John Bernard Books

      Take your meds before you stroke out old man

      • SeeItMyWay

        Hell, for once, I agree. You radical loons don’t have the majoriy’s ear. The majority of Texas Repub’s have been tuned out. The crazies have gotten a stronghold while the rest closed their eyes and ears to it all…but then you got too big for your britches and pissed off Big Business…other than Big Insurance, who dropped a million or so thru the TLR into Abbott’s and Patrick’s accounts. Straus is coming after you; he is not quitting. He will run for Gov, or I hope, Lt Gov, with Big Businesses’ $ and a propaganda campaign to offset the blather ET puts out. Big Businesses’s money up against the Wilkes’ and Dunn’s. That’s a fair fight. Asleep at the Wheel moderate Repub’s, along with Moderate Dem’s ought to prove to be quite a match.

        • BCinBCS

          JJ, man I hope you’re right.

          • WUSRPH

            Very nice DREAM. Straus has no organization…and money cannot buy the GOP nomination….It if could Dewhurst would be either still Lt. Governor or a US Senator today. The sad reality is that Straus has about as much chance of being elected in the GOP Primary as JJ does of converting The Great Listener from being one of the most radical rightist Freedom Caucus members of the Leg. into a “moderate”.

          • WUSRPH

            Joe Straus’ problem is that he is a good on public policy…..while they are good at politics….and good public policy is often not good politics.

          • Don Baker

            Straus was a disaster on public policy.

          • SeeItMyWay

            Be specific. Knock off the anecdotal rhetoric.

          • SeeItMyWay

            That’s a lie. Didn’t even vote for her. Good senator who blew any chance she ever had by playing the abortion card. Don’t let your anamosity override facts. You are a great historian, but a poor prognosticator. The facts do back up this statement. Oldtimers here remember. So does Grieder.

          • WUSRPH

            Your convenient memory at work again…..I was talking about what you were saying AT THIS TIME in the race four years ago not where you wound up. For example, we have this good one from Oct. 23, 2013, responding to my statement that she would be totally sidelined and unable to accomplish anything if by some miracle she were elected (which I said was not going to happen):

            “Respectfully disagree. You don’t know squat about her. She truly can sit down with the other side and get things done. Go ask Corona and the other elected reps from the Metroplex or someone from the North Texas Council of Governments. Go ask conservative Fort Worth business leaders. She finds a way to make things work if others will sit down and seriously discuss. If she is elected everything will change because the voters will have shown they demand it.”

            There was also a series of exchanges over her total inability to pass virtually any legislation to which you responded with fervent claims that she was the victim of a vast conspiracy by the lt. governor, the GOP and the lobby to keep her from being successful and stop her rise to higher office. All of which your convenient memory lapses overlook.

            You changed your position as the race went on because she was not running her campaign the way you thought she should….abortion only became your excuse later….

            Of course that was before you made the complete swing from liberal Davis to right wing radical The Great Listener as your favorite politician……who you now seem to be abandoning for some wild dream about Joe Straus. However, based on your frequent swings this one probably won’t last very long either.

          • SeeItMyWay

            Davis was a moderate as senator in every sense of the word…until abortion was brought up by her, the first time ever, when she put on her pink shoes. That’s when she lost me. This is fact. And I do not vote or support people just because they are not going to be able to sway a bunch of hardheaded good old boys ganging up against her. After all, she whipped one of their clubhouse leaders to get the job.

            You can express your opinions, but not change fact…although you attempt to at every turn.
            Even history now seems to be out of your grasp. Forward thinking always has been.

            You have made one prediction about what to expect Straus and Big Biz to do; I have expressed another. We’ll see.

          • WUSRPH

            All I will say is: Your record speaks for itself…..although you tried to hide it by locking your comments as JJ in the BB archives…..But none of that matters…..I can only look forward to seeing where your swings take you next.

          • SeeItMyWay

            I know nothing about blocking history, or even how to go about it. If my history is not available to you, tell me how to open it up.

            History shows that explicit words don’t mean much to you; you made your living poo-poo’ing them and deciphering in a manner which better suited your position instead of the truth. You were a professional obfuscator. You got paid to peddle bullshit. Now, you do it for free.

          • WUSRPH

            When you set up your account as JJ there was a box to check as to whether your file would be open or closed. You apparently clicked closed. No one could do it for you. You did not under this your new identity. But I have better things to do on a pretty Sunday afternoon than waste my time on you….Onward till you find a new hero….

          • SeeItMyWay

            You ought to just block me. The truth seems to be tough for you to take…especially when it comes to your past positions. Hillary as shoo-in, polls you loved, the prediction of doom and gloom after oil/gas downturn, and, and…

            Old Buck has stories on you that all should hear. Think I’ll ask him if he minds my sharing. Then, I guess, you can call him a liar, too.

            Selective memory by a professional obfuscator is not an uncommon trait of those in the field, I’m thinking.

          • WUSRPH

            I see while I was outside doing some yard work you lowered yourself down to your usual last line of defense–insults, attacks on the other person’s character and some “secret” knowledge you have that is supposed to be so embarrassing that it will scare they away. It would be humorous if it was not so pathetic and childish….

          • Don Baker

            There was nothing moderate about the Abortion Barbie.

          • SeeItMyWay

            Prove that statement. Go look up every bill she filed. Nary a one relating to social issues anywhere. Vets benefits? Check. End to payday lending ripoffs? Check. Only when she succumbed to the Annie’s list money and Ann Richard’s daughter’s Siren’s Songs did she yell out abortion. She lost me there, along with most of her TX Senate Dist 10 supporters. Educate yourself.

          • Don Baker

            Recall you sadly acknowledging the possibility of Byron Cook’s primary defeat when I commented I was supporting his challenger. Happily that came to pass when Cook quit the race he knew he could not win. Last time he won by the fraudulent vote technique known as vote harvesting. That is now illegal and good riddance to Cook. I also read one article suggesting a reason Straus bowed out was because in each of the past 3 elections some of his henchmen were defeated in their primaries, resulting in house members that were in staunch opposition to Straus. I believe that is true, and I made it a practice of donating to primary challengers in several districts if they opposed Straus. Good riddance to a reprehensible house speaker.

        • donuthin2

          Hope so.

  • Kozmo

    Well… if he were going to run, it had better be 2018 or nothing. Four, five years from now, the next gubernatorial election, having been out of office, nobody is going to remember him (even among the maybe 50% — if that many — of Texans who could ID him now). Straus is about to disappear into private citizen limbo without a high-profile candidacy in 2018.

    • WUSRPH

      His future in elected office is limited….He might be able to go to Congress from a San Antonio based district, but would be slaughtered in the GOP primary if he tried a statewide race. It is a shame that there is little place for a conservative who sees problems and wants to solve them in the GOP today.

      • Don Baker

        Staus is no conservative, and you are correct he would not prevail in a statewide GOP primary. GOP primary voters still have American values.

        • BCinBCS

          Don Baker wrote:
          …GOP primary voters still have American values.

          That’s an ignorant, bullsh!t statement.

  • Kozmo

    It’s sad to see Straus cave in like this, because this only tightens the grip of our one-party banana republic in Texas, and a party dominated by fanatics and ideologues and crooks at that.

    • roadgeek

      California? New York? Oregon? Which progressive Mecca will you be gracing with your presence? Illinois, perhaps? Colorado might work, but they still have their guns…..

  • Taylor S.

    So glad he is out of there. Spineless RINO! The great state of Texas is better off without him as speaker. And while we’re at it, let’s put term limits on these corrupt politicians at the state and federal level.

  • SpiritofPearl
  • John Bernard Books

    Straus says he won’t run in 2018….
    “Though Straus, 58, said he doubts his name will appear on the 2018 ballot, he pledged to be an active player in the upcoming GOP primaries, supporting “responsible Republicans.””
    http://www.expressnews.com/news/local/article/Straus-won-t-seek-re-election-12305266.php

    Do you believe him…..Trump has some drained swampland he’ll sell you

  • WUSRPH

    Assuming King does not wrap it up in the next few days, we could be in for an interesting winter and spring as the House members try to pick a new speaker. A few rules for speaker’s races:

    * The folks who will do best will be the first five to endorse a candidate AND the last five who put him over the magic number of 76. The first five are already determined…..so a number of members will hold of signing up with any candidate until the race shapes out more and they can judge their chances of being one of the magic five. (Of course, a candidate will probably tell 5 to 10 members that if they sign up they will be “number 76”.)

    * If minor candidates emerge they are usually just a group of friends who want to be able to “sell” themselves to the potential winner at the best time. If one or more of them announce for one of the major candidates it is often a sign that the race is over.

    *For the future of the State we need to be particularly concerned about where the 12-members of the Freedom Caucus such as JJ’s The Great Listener wind up. They will probably demand–and get “reassurances” (as promises are illegal)—that will substantially advance their agenda. I doubt Zerwas will deal with them…But King just might.

    *Don’t believe any of the vote counts that will be leaked over the coming weeks. They may well add up to more than 150 since the candidates will be taking pledges from candidates as well as incumbents….but, they should be taken with a large block of salt until the winner calls a press conference and lays out his list.

    *Although most of the struggle for now will be within the 95 member GOP caucus, don’t assume that the Democrats are out of it…..There could come a time when a GOP candidate with 30 to 40 votes casts an eye on their 55 votes…ala Straus….but that probably isn’t feasible until after the primaries are over.

  • Texas Publius

    If he truly wants to help Texas, he would run against Dannie Goeb Patrick, not Abbott.

    Abbott may even endorse Straus. House members and Senators and CEOs would help Straus (the senators would do so behind Dan’s back). Everyone is sick of the congenital liar and control freak Dan.

    • John Bernard Books

      Not a chance Lt Dan ran Staus outta Austin…..

    • Don Baker

      We will see in the next election. Patrick is the best Lt Gov we have ever had and will continue to have my support.

  • John Bernard Books

    We promise to never ever lie cheat or steal again…..ever
    “In an unprecedented victorious conclusion to our years-long legal battle against the IRS, the bureaucratic agency has just admitted in federal court that it wrongfully targeted Tea Party and conservative groups during the Obama Administration and issued an apology to our clients for doing so. In addition, the IRS is consenting to a court order that would prohibit it from ever engaging in this form of unconstitutional discrimination in the future”
    https://aclj.org/free-speech/victory-in-proposed-settlement-irs-admits-wrongdoing-apologizes-for-targeting-tea-party-and-conservative-groups?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=siteSharer

    some refuse to believe dems are corrupt…….

  • John Bernard Books

    The truth always comes out…only fools ignore it
    “It turns out that Russia has sown distrust in the U.S. political system—aided and abetted by the Democratic Party, and perhaps the FBI. This is an about-face from the dominant media narrative of the last year, and it requires a full investigation.

    The Washington Post revealed Tuesday that the Hillary Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee jointly paid for that infamous “dossier” full of Russian disinformation against Donald Trump. They filtered the payments through a U.S. law firm (Perkins Coie), which hired the opposition-research hit men at Fusion GPS. Fusion in turn tapped a former British spook, Christopher Steele, to compile the allegations, which are based largely on anonymous, Kremlin-connected sources.”
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/democrats-russians-and-the-fbi-1508971759?mod=e2fb

    ALL dems are corrupt and will stop at nothing to win an election…..that means lying, cheating and stealing.

  • donuthin2

    I doubt that Speaker Straus misread the political climate but rather was principled enough to go against it even at the risk of losing his job. I wish there were more who had the courage to do what they know is right in spite of the political consequences.

  • WUSRPH

    The Dallas MN raises an interesting question: with Straus gone will Abbott continue his move to the far radical right with the crazies or will he moderate? In short, when the Legislature meets next session will there be a adult in the room when the top three leaders meet? Will there be someone who can get beyond the politically popular and red meat issues that Dan Patrick thrives upon to look at the real needs of the State? Straus has filled that role for the last couple of sessions…..but will the new speaker be able (or willing) to do the same. Based on his recent behavior I have little hope for Abbott growing up to play that role…..and even suggesting it for Patrick is ridiculous…As such, we may all be in danger of the political children completely taking over.

    • BCinBCS

      A matching set!
      Children running Washington and children running Austin.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Austin is run by adults. Texas, with some exceptions, is run by children.

        • BCinBCS

          To be clear, I meant the federal and state governments.

          • SpiritofPearl

            I apologize. Poor attempt at humor by me.

            I find it interesting in Texas that Texans refer to state govt. as “Austin.” Hoosiers do not refer to the state govt. as “Indianapolis.”

          • Jed

            “I find it interesting in Texas that Texans refer to state govt. as “Austin.””

            only republicans do this. it is a convenient way to bash both government and liberals with one word.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Interesting observation. They’re probably the same Repubs. who say “Democrat” party instead of “Democratic” party.

        • Don Baker

          Austin is run by far left loons.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Poor you.

    • Don Baker

      Those you consider to be adults are ones I would never allow around my children.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Your children will find them.

  • John Bernard Books

    Atty Gen Paxton exonerated….no charges were not dropped by the DA he was cleared.
    The dems and their friend Joe Straus tried to railroad Atty Gen Paxton….

  • WUSRPH

    Wouldn’t it be nice that after the speaker’s race is over that the 12-member Freedom Caucus is just where they are now—-without any positions and with no promise from a speaker to consider their agenda? It is actually possible to put together a majority, even of only GOP members without them…That would not stop them from causing problems with amendments designed to embarrass other members and points-of-order but the House has lived with that for the past couple of sessions. .Of course, they will be trying to cut a deal with someone….since that is about the only way people like JJ”s The Great Listener have any chance of moving up into a position of even a little importance in the House.

  • WUSRPH

    Any speculation about whom Mueller has indicted? Flynn is a good candidate…..

    • SpiritofPearl

      Both are mentioned in WaPo. Also Dana Boente, the Sally Yates, replacement, abruptly resigned.

      Cue Warren Zevon . . .

    • SeeItMyWay

      BOOM!!! Another off topic post by Dr. Pedant. When will TM realize that no newbie wants to sign onto a new thread and run into a stream of off topic posts by an old state employee who never thought he got his just do? Someone please help him set up his own blog.

      • BCinBCS

        JJ, you are the only one who has a problem with his posts. I find his insight into all aspects of government and politics educational. You should be appreciative of what you can learn from his comments.

        If his comments bother you, why don’t you simply block him…then problem solved.

        • SpiritofPearl

          He wants control.

          • SeeItMyWay

            Yes, he does. My point exactly. He should set up his own blog

        • Don Baker

          No, JJ is not the only one. I find him to be a verbose gasbag profoundly impressed with himself, for no good reason. No reason to block him though.

        • John Bernard Books

          Really?….hahaha

    • anonyfool

      There should be a place we could set bets and odds.

  • SeeItMyWay

    How much money does Texas business have when compared to Dunn’s, the Wilkes’s and Big Insurance’s? ET, Burton, parroting Cruz, and others, have skewered big business in Texas as parasitic and crooks. If you kept up with subtle comments Straus has made in the last several months, it would seem that he was being contacted by some of these big business movers and shakers. The cities and counties where these businesses are located have been painted as being patsies for these mega employers, and a move was made to weaken local control and move it to our state legislature. Does anyone think our state elected do a better job or running things than say, my hometown of Arlington? By any indicator, the answer is a resounding “no”. Straus is the guy that I think the heretofore silent business and city leaders are going to encourage to carry their banner…maybe as Gov, but maybe better as Lt. Gov.

    We’ll see.

  • donuthin2

    ;Who would be the easiest to defeat, Patrick or Abbott?

    • SpiritofPearl

      Mark Jones at Rice speculates that Abbott is in a bind. He can no longer hide behind Straus to protect Texans from Patrick’s off-the-wall agenda while simultaneously being a running dog for Patrick.

      • Don Baker

        I think I have seen some of his speculation. My dogs left it in the yard.

        • SpiritofPearl

          I wasn’t talking to you, bubba.

          Bye now.

    • SeeItMyWay

      I’m sure that question is being asked and studied now by TX business leaders whose money would fund a run.

    • Don Baker

      Neither will be defeated by any democrat. Too many Texans are aware of what the degenerate democrat party stands for.

  • John Bernard Books

    Dems start coverup…after the worst run campaign in history
    “If the FBI and DoJ did collude with the Clinton campaign and the DNC, that’s very disturbing.”
    http://www.independentsentinel.com/as-we-wait-for-arrests-rush-says-mueller-is-in-charge-of-the-cover-up/
    yawl ain’t seen nothing yet dems are so corrupt even they can’t believe it…..

  • BarksintheCountry

    In what state could Straus get elected? Certainly not Texas.

    • SeeItMyWay

      Hide and watch.

      • John Bernard Books

        Didn’t we go thru this with Windy?

  • John Bernard Books

    Lt Dan done ran ol’ Joe outta town….

  • WUSRPH

    Not worth a retort…….

    • SeeItMyWay

      Whow. That’s a new one. No response. I’ll give you a day or two to formulate one.

  • John Bernard Books

    Was LBJ a member of the Klan?!?
    “Was Lyndon Johnson a member of the Ku Klux Klan? According to this memo, they had a Klan member who claimed there was proof that he was.”
    https://breaking.americanewshub.com/2017/10/29/jfk-files-drop-explosive-charge-lbj-democrats-arent-going-like/
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ee6cea8efd89003204d55a57a439870639423b27157204490ff09b2ec2e28466.jpg

  • SpiritofPearl
  • Kozmo

    Some national outlets are picking up on the ramifications of this story, too. The Salon: https://www.salon.com/2017/10/30/texas-all-in-for-trump-state-house-speaker-latest-gop-moderate-to-bail-out/

  • WUSRPH

    I think there was an Armadillo newsletter on Friday but, if so, I mistakenly deleted it. If you got one, could you post a link here?

  • WUSRPH

    History quiz:
    What event will be world be remembering, but few will be celebrating, come Nov. 7th?

    • SpiritofPearl

      Martin Luther’s 500th anniversary?

      • WUSRPH

        Nope that was Oct. 31st….It is the 100th anniversary of the overthrow of the provisional Russian government by the Bolsheviks (Communists).

        • SpiritofPearl

          Which calendar?

          • WUSRPH

            Luther was in 1517 when Christian Europe was still on the Julian Calendar….but I assume that the date has been converted to what it would have been on the Gregorian Calendar….just as the date of the Russian Revolution has been adjusted to make “the October Revolution” date Nov. 7th. Russia was still on the Julian at the time. The communists converted to the Gregorian after they took over.

    • José

      I suspect that Mr. Ulyanov would be disappointed to see how the past century unfolded.

  • WUSRPH

    Two indictments, one guilty plea…..Mueller put the squeeze on the foreign policy aid….but he needs someone higher up…..but what do you want to bet that Manafort and company were promised pardons months ago?

    • SeeItMyWay

      Oh, you do such a good job of broadcasting your ideological, one sided message. Old habits, for a professional obfuscator are hard to break. How can you, and your minions, keep ignoring the other breaking parts of this “investigation” that you don’t like hearing or reading about, and just choose to ignore? Anyone without a totally biased and radical viewpoint is sitting back and thinking, “this is opening up a can of worms on both sides of the equation.” But not you…even when hearlded bastions of liberalism like the NYT’s and the WaPo are questioning the DNC’s, the Podesta’s, Hillary’s and Bill’s involvement in the stink. You are who you are…a professional spinmeister, albeit “retired. Spare us your ongoing proclivity for one-sided blather. It grows old.

      • WUSRPH

        Speaking of your “convenient memory lapses”: Have you been doing some “file cleaning” to preserve what you want us to think you said? I say that because of the attached link:

        https://www.texasmonthly.com/burka-blog/wendy-davis-surfaces/

        from AFTER the election that covers a lengthy discussion of the Davis campaign and her record as a senator in which, as usual, you were perfuse in you praise for her record in the legislature. BUT, somehow every single one of your comments has been deleted…..which is something ONLY you could do. One could suspect that you were doing a little after-the-fact memory correction BUT, based on the same sample that exists in the lead-in, I think it was more likely one of those days when you had spent far too much time at the 19th hole or its equivalent and went overboard with your insults and personal attacks on others. When you do that you have a record of coming back a few hours later and deleting the worst ones…..and that is probably what happened this time. Still it is convenient that all the good things you had to say in her defense were deleted.

        • WUSRPH

          Doing a little more checking shows that virtually every time the search shows that John Johnson commented on a burka blog…..your comments have been deleted. Perhaps you did it….maybe without knowing…when you changed your posting name. I would actually prefer that it happened by mistake rather than think that you would go that far by design.

          • Jed

            maybe JJ is a russian.

          • WUSRPH

            I have to disagree….although JJ is clearly one of the kind of people the Russians targeted—and probably successfully–his visceral hatred of both Obama and Clinton was just too strong. I doubt that a foreign agent–no matter how skilled—could have faked that much pure hate. Plus you would think there would be at least an appearance of logic in his thought train and, again I doubt a foreign agent in St. Petersburg could come up with a plot in which he transfers his utter political devotion from one of the most liberal members of the Texas Senate to one of the farthest right radicals in the Texas House almost overnight…with the only excuse being that they “listen to him” (or pretend to). It’s just too illogical….Plus no one can fake the frenzy that JJ can work himself into with his more than vivid fantasies of the drugs, drinking and sex habits of young black males. So I suspect we will have to reluctantly accept that JJ is one of our own…

          • SeeItMyWay

            Hahaha. I wouldn’t have to be intoxicated to make an ad hominem attack on some of your pedantic ways, nor your history as a professional political spinmeister. Some were overboard and, after reflection, were deleted. I never have deleted one post I have made on a personal political opinion.

            I can remember what you posted in the past without looking it up; I feel certain others who were around can as well. The same holds true for my past positions on any given subject.

            Keep up the obfuscation. It’s engrained in you.

      • WUSRPH

        When one of them is indicted I will be happy to comment…..bo so far all we have is charges—mostly by Republicans—and probably a few from those Russian sources you have yet to disown.

        • SeeItMyWay

          You didn’t wait for an indictment to start hammering anything about the Mueller investigation. In fact, you started it months before…but ignore and refuse to comment on the mounting evidence against Hillary’s, Bill’s, the DNC’s, the Podesta’s and other’s involvement in the stink with the Russians. It paints the true picture of just who you are and how you operate.

  • John Bernard Books

    How low will democrats go? you ain’t seen nuttin yet….
    http://latinovictory.us/

    Democrats haven’t won a statewide race in Texas in decades……they are desperate

  • WUSRPH

    As of now there is still no PULBLIC evidence that the Trump campaign worked with the Russians to defeat Hillary Clinton…BUT there certainly is evidence that people involved with the campaign (including the son and son-in-law) WANTED TO. Meanwhile, the evidence of how far the Russian went and how many potentially millions of people they reached continues to accumulate. I wonder how much of the garbage the likes of JJ and the Troll kept posting about Evil Hillary originally came from the Russian effort…..of course, they will never acknowledge how they and many others may have used by a foreign power.

    • John Bernard Books

      You old commie go away

    • Jed

      “Back in the 1950s people who spread such information without knowing its true source were called “dupes of the international communist conspiracy”……I wonder what that makes them today?”

      republicans.

  • WUSRPH

    This editorial from the Houston Chronicle on Straus and he future is more than worth your attention.

    http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Straus-lives-12314763.php

    But I fear that Yeats was right….the center cannot hold.

  • John Bernard Books

    the implosion of the dem [arty….
    “Though the Oct. 30 email says that the DNC is looking for a “staff of diverse voices and life experiences,” it apparently doesn’t mean white men.

    DNC’s Data Service Manager Madeleine Leader purportedly wrote in an email that the desire for diversity excludes “cisgender straight white males.”

    Leader adds, “I personally would prefer that you not forward to cisgender straight white males, as they are already in the majority.””
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/11/01/dnc-white-men-shouldnt-apply-for-tech-jobs.html

    the dem party consists mostly of nuts…..those who aren’t nuts are wackadoos and fruitcakes

  • John Bernard Books

    All dems are corrupt….
    “One of the special prosecutors in the Ken Paxton criminal case has been billing Collin County taxpayers for dozens of hours of work he reports performing while traveling to exotic locales around the world, from St. Tropez to the South Pacific, Ho Chi Minh City to Havana, Marrakesh to Myanmar.”
    https://texasmonitor.org/ken-paxton-kent-schaffer-bills-during-vacations/

    people who defend these crooks are just like the appeasing dems who defend terrorist Sayfullo Saipov

  • John Bernard Books

    Should a male chavunist lead the Travis Cty Dem Party?
    “Until a week ago, Austin prosecutor Rick Cofer was next in line to lead the Travis County Democratic Party, the lone contender in a race to lead a group that has helped recruit and elect most local government officials.
    In one instance, Cofer slapped a defense attorney on the buttocks with a file folder in open court, according to records. The action prompted a judge to ask, “Did I just see what I thought I saw?” the records show.
    “Progressives should live their values,” he said. “The best way to disrupt a culture that disrespects women is to take real action. That is why I got out of the race for chair, so that any supporters could back a strong woman for chair.”
    http://www.mystatesman.com/news/local-govt–politics/race-for-travis-democratic-party-chair-there-more-the-story/GqH0FzxQN4EMQYZqZhyH6O/

    he was a typical dem male…..like Bill Clinton or Ted Kennedy or Harvey Weinstein et al………

  • WUSRPH

    On a different topic: Anyone take a look at the Christie Commission report on drugs? It is much more than you would have expected from the GOP types….One of its major recommendations is:

    ” a large expansion of medication-assisted treatment, which many experts have called the most effective approach and which Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb has endorsed. That therapy provides users with buprenorphine, methadone and naltrexone in an attempt to wean them off harmful addictions to heroin or prescription narcotics.”

    Sounds reasonable, but it won’t fly in Texas…..This is the state after all where the governor won’t even approve needle exchanges……but then he probably thinks drug addicts are sinners who need to be punished.

    • José

      Shhh. The World Series is on.

      • BCinBCS

        ‘Stros win, Astros win!

        Man, I’ve waited a long time for this.
        (I grew up just south of Houston so the ‘Stros are my team.)

  • SpiritofPearl

    Flynn Sr. followed at least five Russian troll accounts before the election and pushed their messages:

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/michael-flynn-followed-russian-troll-accounts-pushed-their-messages-in-days-before-election

    • Jed

      flynn probably knew they were russians, though, unlike JJ.

      • SpiritofPearl

        JJ knows they’re Russians. He is engaging in magical thinking to assuage his conscience.

  • WUSRPH

    Scott Milder has made it official…he is running against Patrick….I guess that strikes Straus off of JJ’s list of candidates for that office…..Well we still have until Dec. 11th.

  • WUSRPH

    Here is an important story from The New Republic:

    http://tinyurl.com/ybb7gjbs

    that provides a lot of background and information on how the Russians have used social media—and people of the ilk of the Troll and JJ who spread it—to undermine America.

  • John Bernard Books

    Now we know Straus is going…
    “U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, is retiring from Congress, two sources close to the congressman told The Texas Tribune on Thursday.”
    https://www.texastribune.org/2017/11/02/lamar-smith-retiring-congress/?utm_campaign=trib-social&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook&utm_content=9339462253
    Straus was Smith’s campaign finance chair and heir apparent to Smith’s seat.
    another dem on the dole…..

  • WUSRPH

    The other day I said something about the only reasonable race for Joe Straus would be for a San Antonio based US House seat…..did he know that Lamar Smith was retiring?

    • WUSRPH

      Question: Could Donna Campbell beat Joe Straus? I hate to say it but I think she could….

      • WUSRPH

        Sen. Campbell says no to congress. I guess after going to all that trouble to amend the state constitution so that she could continue to limit at home while holding a statewide office she decided to stick with her current plans. One can only hope that they are never achieved.

  • WUSRPH
  • WUSRPH

    According to The Blast these are some names house races to keep in mind:

    The conservative group Texans for Fiscal Responsibility released its firs round of endorsements this morning for the 2018 Republican primaries. Here are the candidates it’s backing in contested and open-seat GOP primaries:

    Bryan Slaton, who’s running against state Rep. Dan Flynn of Canton

    Thomas McNutt, who’s running for the seat being vacated by state Rep. Byron Cook of Corsicana

    Armin Mizani, who’s running against state Rep. Giovanni Capriglione of Southlake

    Jared Patterson, who’s running for the seat being vacated by state Rep. Pat Fallon of Frisco

    Mayes Middleton, who’s running against state Rep. Wayne Faircloth of Galveston

    Jay Wiley, who’s running against state Rep. Paul Workman of Austin

    Steve Toth, who’s running for the seat being vacated by state Rep. Mark Keough of The
    Woodlands (Toth was a one-term extreme rightist who gave up his seat to lose a senate primary)

    Jason Huddleston, who’s running against state Rep. Ken King of Canadian

    Jonathan Boos, who’s running for the seat being vacated by state Rep. Cindy Burkett of
    Sunnyvale

    Drew Brassfield, who’s running against state Rep. Four Price of Amarillo

  • WUSRPH

    In case JJ is keeping tack of how successful his campaign to make a moderate out of The Great Listener is going:
    He got a 90 from the Young Conservatives of Texas. The average for GOP house members was 41.
    I guess he’s still got a long way to go….but we know JJ will keep trying.